ATLANTA (CBS Atlanta) – A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that high blood pressure is out of control for millions of Americans.

The CDC says that 67 million Americans suffer from high blood pressure and that more than half do not have it under control.

“Thirty-six million Americans who have high blood pressure … don’t have it under control,” Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the CDC, said.

Frieden added that high blood pressure is public health enemy number two behind tobacco.

One of the main reasons Americans don’t have their blood pressure under control is because they are suffering from hypertension, which is the leading risk of cardiovascular disease. Treating high blood pressure costs the health care system $131 billion a year.

Too many Americans have uncontrolled high blood pressure which is a serious health risk. There are many opportunities for people with high blood pressure to gain control,” Amy Valderrama, a CDC epidemiologist and the study’s lead author, said. “Doctors, nurses, other health care providers and their patients must pay regular and frequent attention to controlling high blood pressure.

People are four times more likely to die from a stroke and three times more likely to die from heart disease due to uncontrolled high blood pressure.

This study was based on information from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2003 to 2010.


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